Each day new stories appear in the headlines. Another development in the Arab Spring, another change in long running criminal cases, or a natural disaster that suddenly fills the front pages. What about the old stories? Do people not want to read about these anymore? Who decides whether old stories are still of interest to the public or not?
A case in point is Egypt. In January 2011 the uprising in Egypt began and took control of the headlines. Of course, this was a hugely important event in history and served as a catalyst for similar protests to capture the Arab world so justifiably deserved extensive coverage. The happenings in Egypt were inescapable for those who even took a fleeting look at a front page of a newspaper or happened to hear one minute of the lunchtime news.
But what is the situation in Egypt now? A glance of the headlines does not really inform us. Of course, some coverage is given to the current elections, but what is happening on the streets of Egypt and what are the thoughts of Egyptians?
In fact, the situation in Egypt is in reality still unsettled. “To live in Cairo these days is to live in constant disorientation” quotes one Twitter user. Indeed, it does not take a lot of research to see that many people in Egypt are unhappy. More and more religion is becoming involved in political decisions and it is dangerous. Remember the situation in France where around 50% of the population was killed in civil war between Catholics and Protestants? Egypt needs to be careful to avoid a similar situation.
Unrest on the street also still continues, despite elections which should be calming the situation. Civilians still remain angry at the security forces that seem to still be in control. Security forces appear angry with civilians for having an opinion and voicing it. It is a continuing struggle and innocent civilians are the people getting hurt.
Although not as severe as a year ago, the discontent in Egypt is obvious when looked for.
News really is forgotten rather quickly these days. We must do our own research to remain truly up-to-date with those stories which are there one day and gone the next. The fact that they have disappeared from the news does not mean that they are no longer important.
Laura Owen 13.01.12